On January 14,2017 Michael Daly a writer for The Daily Beast wrote an article titled “The Cop Who Forgave His Killer.”
He described how thousands attended the funeral of NYPD Detective Steven McDonald. As a young cop, McDonald approached a fifteen-year-old suspect in Central Park. The teen drew a gun and shot him, paralyzing him from the neck down. As McDonald began to realize the full extent of his injuries, he was filled with despair and anger. But then he prayed the famous prayer of St. Francis of Assisi: “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon….”
His attitude changed, and He became an advocate for forgiveness. When he passed away at age 59, his family prayed the Lord’s Prayer: …as we forgive those who trespass against us.
We can’t survive life’s traumas if we don’t learn to forgive. When we forgive, we are not excusing or condoning actions. We are choosing to release the bitterness that can poison our own lives. We are letting God’s compassion break through our heaviness so we can forgive as God has forgiven us.
My daughter Ashtyn graduated last Friday from Springfield Catholic High School. The Bishop of Cape Gerardo Springfield quoted St. Francis of Assisi in his commencement address.
” O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love.”
St. Francis of Assisi
To that I say, “Amen”